Article by Janine Sala, Compliance & Procedural Specialist
In the nearly dozen years since New Dimensions in Health Care opened its doors at 40 Wall Street, Amsterdam, hundreds of individuals with disabilities and other people in the community have received dental services through this Article 28 clinic operated by Liberty. Our community has always been fortunate to have many outstanding dental providers, yet the services offered by New Dimensions were developed to address a very specific area of need present in the disabled and Medicaid/Medicare-eligible population.
Prior to 1996, it was necessary to transport a significant number of individuals with developmental disabilities, especially people in wheelchairs, to the Capital District to receive the specialized dental services they required. Often a trip to the dentist would take up a whole day, with transportation to and from Albany, waiting time and the actual time of the service.
In reality, it was not uncommon for people with disabilities and older patients to forego dental care, because they were unable to find a participating Medicaid/Medicare provider able to meet their specific needs in the immediate area or transportation to appointments was an issue. The existence of New Dimensions has alleviated that problem for many individuals.
The staff at New Dimensions in Health Care emphasize the importance of building a personal connection with every patient. The ultimate goal is to provide positive reinforcement and make patients feel comfortable, making it more likely that they will continue to prioritize their all-important dental care.
New Dimensions strives for overall patient satisfaction and positive outcomes as these two patient success stories convey:
A community patient came to New Dimensions extremely distraught about her appearance. She was crying and upset because of the way her teeth looked; they were badly decayed from years of neglect. She was told that it would take many appointments to repair the damage but as long as she stayed with it, her smile could be restored. She continued to come in time after time, keeping all of her numerous appointments. The end result was so positive that now she comes in smiling and happy, and has also brought in family members to meet the providers who helped her. The experience increased pride in her appearance and gave her overall self-esteem and confidence a much-needed lift.
A few years ago a little girl started coming for appointments; she was very young, and had excessive decay. She was scared and would often cry. As a result of many years of consistency and the perseverance of staff, this young girl now enjoys coming to her appointments, comes back into the operatory by herself, and loves to draw pictures for the dental professionals she has come to know and trust. It is never too early to start dental care. New Dimensions serves children as young as one year old in its 1-2-3 Smile program. Most children are apprehensive about visiting the dentist which is why New Dimensions strives to make it a pleasant and fun experience for each child and his or her family.
New Dimensions in Health Care has had a positive impact on so many lives over the years. If you would like to learn more about the services provided by NDHC, call 518.843.2575. Posted 041608